Drug Safety

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Drug Safety


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3 College Sophomore

Drug Safety: Alcohol and drug use is relatively prevalent but there is little pressure to partake if you don't want to

1 College Sophomore

Drug Safety: Alcohol is a huge problem here. There are hospitalizations every year. I believe it is a result of the stressful workload and lack of healthy social events. People work really hard during the week and only get Saturday night off so people let loose.

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5 College Freshman

Drug Safety: The Drug and Alcohol policy at the College is extremely comprehensive. Like most colleges, drugs and alcohol are present on campus. However, it is something completely up to each individual if they want to take part in them. Most policies on campus can be boiled down to our philosophy of Self-Governance. Basically, if you're not hurting anyone else, you can live your life however you wish. If a student needs medical assistance from drugs or alcohol, neither that student nor any of their peers will get punished. This makes it so that students never hesitate to get the help their friends need.

3 people found this useful Report
2 College Freshman

Drug Safety: There is quite the stigma for drug use on campus because it is very visible. There however is no peer pressure to partake. The policy is self government so no one really messes with the people who use drugs.

4 College Freshman

Drug Safety: There are a group that drink and does drugs but compared to the whole school, it is about 1 person in every 20 people. Drugs and alcohol are not a problem because the children who does them are careful and there is no peer pressure.


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The administration and a large majority of students believe that Grinnell has a drug problem. The College’s alcohol policy is almost nonexistent. While students are not permitted to have open containers on or around campus grounds, this is not entirely enforced. Local police rarely get involved in school functions and will even make exceptions for events. Most theft and destruction is done by people under the influence. While it’s fairly safe to leave your bike unlocked on a Monday, if left on a Friday, it’s likely to be stolen and crashed by a drunken reveler. Drunks also leave messes in hall lounges, and it’s not uncommon to see puke in hallways. Every few months, an article will show up in the Scarlet & Black about a student taken to the hospital for alcohol poisoning. This is when the College intervenes and demands professional help. However, the self-governance ethos that permeates the campus generally means that when people get out of control, their peers have the responsibility and capacity to bring them in/put them to bed.

Marijuana is also commonly used by Grinnell students but seems to have far less destructive effects. It seems that most have experimented with it at some point. The College generally ignores it, despite the pungent odor that wafts from one hallway to the next, but occasionally the local police do get involved. While warrants are almost never obtained merely for possession, once every one or two years, students are taken in on charges of possession with intent to sell. This can carry some heavy penalties. Most have been able to get off relatively light.

Facts & Statistics

Alcohol-Related Referrals
Alcohol-Related Arrests
Drug-Related Referrals
Drug-Related Arrests
Most Popular Drugs
  • Alcohol
  • Marijuana
Drug Counseling Programs
Student Health and Counseling Services (SHACS)
The Forum, lower level
(641) 269-3230
Evaluations are available; students can also be referred to other specialists.
Did You Know?
During Block Party (the last Friday of the academic year), a truck with around 18 kegs of beer is parked one block off campus, and students, faculty, and police all join in the festivities by indulging in copious consumption.

Student Polls

Name the most popular drugs on campus.    Based on 27 responses

  • 39% Alcohol
  • 33% Marijuana
  • 16% Prescription "study drugs" (Adderall, Ritalin)
  • 9% Psychedelics (LSD, mushrooms)
  • 1% None
  • 1% Other prescription drugs (barbiturates, Valium, Xanax)
  • 0% Ecstasy
  • 0% Prescription painkillers (Vicodin, OxyContin)
  • 0% Steroids
  • 0% Cocaine
  • 0% Heroin
  • 0% Methamphetamine

How would you describe the drug scene on campus (not including alcohol)?    Based on 27 responses

  • 0% Drugs are not used on campus. Seriously.
  • 7% Barely noticeable. Very few students take part.
  • 41% Somewhat noticeable. Less than half of students take part.
  • 37% Pretty noticeable. Many students take part.
  • 15% Very noticeable. Most students take part.

How would you describe the social drinking scene on campus?    Based on 27 responses

  • 0% Students don't drink on campus. Seriously.
  • 4% Barely noticeable. Very few students take part.
  • 7% Somewhat noticeable. Less than half of students take part.
  • 37% Pretty noticeable. Many students take part.
  • 52% Very noticeable. Most students take part.

How much access do underage students have to alcohol?    Based on 26 responses

  • 4% Very limited.
  • 4% Somewhat limited.
  • 35% Somewhat abundant.
  • 58% Practically unlimited.

How does peer pressure affect students' use of drugs and alcohol?    Based on 26 responses

  • 46% You can have a great social life without drugs or alcohol.
  • 35% Most people partake in some form, but no one treats you differently if you don't.
  • 19% You'll definitely feel a little awkward if you don't drink.
  • 0% If you don't partake, you're left out.
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